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Keywords:

  • contextual performance;
  • instrument development;
  • job performance;
  • nursing;
  • patient outcomes;
  • quality of care;
  • task performance

Abstract

Title. Distinguishing between task and contextual performance for nurses: development of a job performance scale

Aim.  This paper is a report of a development and validation of a new job performance scale based on an established job performance model.

Background.  Previous measures of nursing quality are atheoretical and fail to incorporate the complete range of behaviours performed. Thus, an up-to-date measure of job performance is required for assessing nursing quality.

Methods.  Test construction involved systematic generation of test items using focus groups, a literature review, and an expert review of test items. A pilot study was conducted to determine the multidimensional nature of the taxonomy and its psychometric properties. All data were collected in 2005.

Findings.  The final version of the nursing performance taxonomy included 41 behaviours across eight dimensions of job performance. Results from preliminary psychometric investigations suggest that the nursing performance scale has good internal consistency, good convergent validity and good criterion validity.

Conclusion.  The findings give preliminary support for a new job performance scale as a reliable and valid tool for assessing nursing quality. However, further research using a larger sample and nurses from a broader geographical region is required to cross-validate the measure. This scale may be used to guide hospital managers regarding the quality of nursing care within units and to guide future research in the area.